Six Solid Reasons the P320 is the Right Choice for the Army’s MHS

The P320 is without a doubt at the forefront of modern handgun design. But is it right for military duty?

The U.S. Army selected the SIG Sauer P320 as their new sidearm, replacing the iconic and long-lived Beretta M9. While it’s less of a dramatic change than when the military largely shifted from the M1911 to the M9, the Army’s adoption of a polymer-framed, striker-fired service pistol is still big news.

Perhaps the biggest reason is that it was overdue. Without getting into the pros and cons of Beretta’s established yet now-controversial design, the polymer-framed, striker-fired service pistol is the overwhelmingly preferred type of sidearm for militaries worldwide — for decades now.

When you have piles of spare parts, magazines and most importantly, training and facilities for one firearm, it’s hard to argue for a new one. Even if newer designs suit a majority of users better than older guns, making the switch is hard.

With the Army’s previous crop of service pistols reaching its end of life, this was the opportunity to adopt something more modern. This was no surprise to anyone as the search for a new handgun — the Modular Handgun System program — has been running for years.

Whether or not the P320 was the best decision for the military will be hotly disputed for more years than it will even be in service. That’s just the way people roll. But it really is a good decision, and here are six reasons why.

1. Polymer-framed

There really shouldn’t be much argument left in the polymer-versus-metal frame debate. Polymer-framed handguns are more than suited for military service. Under most conditions a polymer-framed handgun will last as long or longer than an alloy- or even steel-framed handgun. They have steel components that may fail over time, just like metal-framed handguns, but these parts are easy to replace, where metal frames are often a loss.

Yes, there are extreme conditions that will break polymers where metal will not suffer damage. But that doesn’t matter with the SIG P320, because the polymer frame, well it isn’t. The P320 is built on a skeletal steel frame. The plastic grip is just a shell. If it breaks it can be replaced as easily as the pistol grip on an M4 carbine. The grip isn’t the gun.

On top of that, the inner steel frame is small and protected by the grip and slide. It should be able to survive, with maintenance, abuses that would trounce most metal-framed guns. This makes it a smart move for economic reasons, too.

2. Low Price

Price was a major factor in selecting Beretta over SIG so many years ago. (Photo: Spc. Paxton Busch)

The P320 is cheap. In a good way. It uses a couple of really genius design elements that make it easy to produce and maintain. In addition to having a completely replaceable exterior and grip, the internal frame is mostly stamped steel. After stamping, critical surfaces are machined to the correct dimensions. Less critical parts are cast (and are also easily replaceable).

The other critical components, like the slide assembly, barrel, and recoil assembly are produced using more or less conventional methods. The top half of the gun handles the bulk of the stress and it’s made like any other SIG. The P320 employs the best of both manufacturing worlds.

How cheap is it? We know the contract is for up to $580 million dollars. The price-per-gun is more complicated because the contract calls for more than just pistols over the course of the next ten years. What’s the bottom line, though? It could be as low as $207 per pistol.

When the military made the change from .45 ACP to 9mm it was SIG’s P226 that led throughout the trials. However, Beretta’s to-be M9 cost less, while performing well enough. Ultimately cheap — when done well — wins.

3. Striker-Fired

And then there’s the fact that it’s a striker-fired handgun. Hammer-fired handguns will always be relevant. They have their strengths and many uses, from casual shooting to professional fighting. But the learning curve slopes more steeply with these guns.

Striker-fired handguns have mass appeal. Just as not everyone in the military is expected to be a warfighter not everyone issued a handgun is expected to be all that good with it. Striker-fired handguns are easier to use and train with.

For shooters looking for a handgun with a crisp, predictable and accurate trigger pull — the P320 has that too. The P320 has a pseudo two-stage trigger. The first stage disengages the firing pin block. The second stage releases the firing pin with a quick, sharp break.

Of course, the P320 isn’t the only modern striker-fired handgun with a nice trigger.

4. True Modularity

The actual firearm is the stainless steel subassembly. Everything else can be swapped out or replaced.

With the P320 users can easily swap parts and adopt different cartridges for different roles and missions. That’s nice, but that itself isn’t new.

The SIG P320 is one of the few guns that can be converted from a subcompact concealed-carry pistol to a full-size duty gun without any special parts or tools. While many other service pistols use the same internal components across the board, the P320 is one of the few handguns that can be readily transformed from one configuration to another.

Readily is key there. There are a few guns that have similar frame and grip setups, SIG has a complete, in-production lineup of conversion kits that’s available now. They also have suppressor-ready and optics-ready parts that are developed and finalized, ready to order.

The P320 in that light is a logistics dream come true.

5. Meets Requirements

And that’s why the Army wanted it. The Army’s Modular Handgun System solicitation was so specific about features it would be easy to assume that it was written specifically so that the P320 and only the P320 would meet all their requirements.

But what came first, the requirements or the SIG, really? When the MHS requirements were published there was enough time for anyone working on next-generation handguns to develop a new gun, or modify an existing gun, to meet them. SIG wasn’t the only company developing guns with these features they just managed to get them all in one package.

Plenty of companies delivered designs that squeaked by the requirements, SIG was just ahead of the game. What’s surprising is that the military put out a set of requirements — and they got what they wanted.

6. Best(-ish) in Class

Finally, there are few reasons to dislike the P320. It doesn’t have any glaring problems or unusual properties that make it suffer. Sure the bore axis is a little high — it’s a SIG, that’s nothing new. Maybe the factory sight picture isn’t the most popular but it still shoots straight.

Maybe it could have a true ambidextrous safety — the standard safety is merely reversible. And maybe it could have been hammer-fired — and then it wouldn’t have qualified for the job.

There are other modern handguns that do some things better. The H&K VP9 has a better grip and by some standards a better trigger. The FNS is fully ambidextrous. The Glock 19 is proven and already in service with American forces. But none of these pack all the required features and failing that, the P320 simply does not have any tangible drawbacks.

It’s maybe a little bland, a little municipal, less sexy than some of the other next-gen service pistols. But it does everything the Modern Handgun System needs it to do and more, and it does it all very well. The P320 is no compromise. That’s why it’s a great choice for the MHS.

Or is it? What do you think the military should have selected? Glock 19M? Something FN-ish? Put the Military back in M&P? Or blast it all, the M1911 did everything just right in the first place!

About the author: Max Slowik is a writer with over a dozen years of experience and is a lifelong shooter. He has unwavering support for the Second Amendment and the human right to self-defense. Like Thomas Paine, he’s a journalist by profession and a propagandist by inclination.

{ 149 comments… add one }
  • Ronald S Heacock March 22, 2019, 7:16 am

    Why ANYONE would like a Block over any handgun-especially a SIG,is beyond me . This is America,so we can choose ! I find nothing bland or un-sexy about any SIG I own and the fit is perfect every time. The only handgun I have ever owned or handled that does NOT need after market grips. The 320 , or any SIG , is always a GREAT choice ~!!!

  • Gem Gram September 10, 2018, 7:15 am

    Anyone can be taught quickly to shoot different “size” guns. My 10 and 12 year old boys shot my 1911 series 70 Colt. One absolutely loved that gun. Both shot my Model 29 .44 mag. No problem! So all the whohaw about hand size is simply politically correct crap. As for usability, reliability, shootability and “Teachability”, I have found nothing better than the original Glock 17. I hated the feel of them when they came out, but bought one anyway because they ALWAYS shot and carried seventeen rounds. Then I discovered that in combat simulations of multi-round – multi target simulations they simply worked better and faster. AND literally beginning women could be quickly taught to shoot them better than most longtime men pistol shooters. Without the prejudices the men had, the women simply learned the right way and never allowed the wrong way to get in the way. Just to see if it could be done I shot Glocks on two occasions 5000 rounds without cleaning and without ANY failures using everything from Wolf to Glaser an Mag-Safe to custom hand loads without any failures. All from those dirty guns and NO failures. I have never duplicated that success with any other firearm; let alone handgun. Conclusion: If you do not limpwrist a Glock it will ALWAYS work…PERIOD. Being a bit of a gun enthusiast (some call gun-nut) I own about everything from Walther PP to custom shop Gold Cups to Sig 226 and a bunch of revolvers. With that said if I had to face bad people at close quarters and my life depended on it I would want to be carrying that first Glock 17 that I bought when they first came to America. Now all that being said ANY change from that silly Beretta is a good change. And though not as fast or good as a Glock 17 my Sig 226 still works damn good and the New Sig IS a good choice. Though hat silly safety is a bit stupid. Don’t jump out of planes with a round in the chamber and learn that when you hit the ground to put one in the pipe. Safeties are by their very nature “Unsafe”. The purpose of a pistol is either as a window dressing to empress non dangerous people OR never more than a last resort to save a life. If you have to use it to save your life you need it to work right then without ever thinking. How many times have you seen someone at a range try to pull the trigger on a firearm with the safety on? Hell, how many times have you done so yourself. Best way I know to show someone they are flinching 🙂 The real “Manuel Safety” is to never put your finger in the finger guard with a round possibly in the chamber. And when jumping out of planes or leaving it laying around to never have a round in the chamber. Really as simple as that. I am convinced that “Safeties” on guns have caused the death of a hell of a lot more people than they have saved. ESPECIALLY of stupid people who think they make guns safe; like the fool Officers who made that a specification requirement. Sorry for the run on but some of us old guys have strong opinions about somethings.

    Remember folks: Knowledge comes with experience, and most that experience comes from stupid mistakes…

    • Fyrcapn March 22, 2019, 9:30 am

      Sounds like your somewhat resistant to change….and that’s ok. You found something that works for you. But in reading your statement you didn’t like the glock at first…so coundn’t The same thing be said for the 320 ? It is too new to be proven completely but I am a true sig fan I have more than a few. You know too. Sig is quality. I did not have the same luck with my glock 34 in idpa as you did. I did a ‘fouling’ test and mine only lasted approximately 2500 rounds before it malfunctioned twice and cost me the match…I was curious. I had good luck with the glock. But if the 320 had been out I most likely would have shot that instead. I know you didn’t say anything bad about the 320 but give it a try you might like it.

  • Robert D Weth September 7, 2018, 4:56 pm

    Just a personal observation,\’there is 10mm,and there is everything else…it shoots flat and hits hard.As LEO I\’ve had to put down many large animals involved in mva\’s…all fell to one 180gr JHP.I like the 320,have taccops version works well supressed…but that 9mm is SWELL for jack rabbits….10mm is the best service auto….it\’s the only handgun that makes 45ACP second best.

  • PaulWVa April 20, 2018, 1:18 pm

    I got into the Sig 320 early on. It came out just at the time I was looking for a new carry gun. I purchased the Compact and then a little later I picked up a Sub-Compact for it’s better conceal size. Both are 9mm and are very accurate, easy to shoot and work on. The little sub is far and away the most accurate small auto I have ever shot, nothing I’ve seen even comes close. I have no problem with the 9mm as a defensive load as not too many bad guys are wearing body on the street. And I’m not quite sure what the issue is with shooting and killing cars has to do with anything in the real world. I think some people watch to many movies and TV. I love my Sigs and carry one everyday. So far in about 4000 combined rounds in the two guns I’ve had exactly ONE failure to eject with the Compact and that was with some steel case ammo. The little sub has yet have a single failure of any kind. I’m looking forward to getting an X5 for USPSA competition.

    I can’t speak to all the military aspects of “secondary weapons” but being able to carry a lighter load of ammo, gun, and more ammo in the gun and on the body, all seem like strong points in favor of the Sig. I love 1911s and .45s and I love ’57 Chevy’s but real don’t want either for everyday use. I can do better.

  • Alfonso Tobias April 20, 2018, 2:54 am

    I am intrigued by the P320. A lifelong Glock fan, it works for me. I know it’s trigger is considered gritty and sluggish, but that’s not something that can’t be fixed cheaply.

    The P320 is something that I may look into because of the ability to go from full size to compact and sub-compact and not have to buy a whole new gun.

  • Lon March 3, 2017, 1:01 pm

    I agree with what some others have said about the P320 grip. I have large hands and the medium grip on my P320 (.40 S&W) feels bulky. Not that it’s big, it’s “fat” It feels unnecessarily wide and round. The first time I shot it I had trouble getting it pointed straight on quick draw and fire drills. My flat sided Glocks/XDs/etc point much better for me. Strange because when I first switched from revolvers to autos the flat sided grips felt odd but, After shooting them for a while, I realized that my hands “indexed” with the flats better. Plus, the med grip on my P320 doesn’t feel any smaller that the grip on my XD mod 2 .45. I haven’t held a small grip so I’ll reserve judgement on those. The pistol feels very large because of it’s high bore axis, when I think about the tall pistol with a small sized grip the first thing that pops into my head is that it will feel like a Hi-Point. Which brings me to another issue: why does this striker fired pistol have such a high bore axis? It’s not just a little high, it’s hammer fired pistol high. Maybe if I shot only Sigs it wouldn’t feel so tall to me but compared to my other striker pistols it’s comically tall.
    I, personally, do not understand why the military has to adapt it’s firearms to fit a small percentage of new “soldiers” who cannot adapt to the weapon handed them. What are they going to do in combat if their pistol fails? Are they going to die because the next weapon handed them does not fit their game-remote shaped paws? Do we really have to consider whether some women (or some “men”) will want to shoot their sidearm if it doesn’t fit them perfectly? Seriously, is this what our military has become? My daughter happily shoots every new gun I buy, regardless of brand or caliber. Her first experience with 45 acp was in a sub-compact at 8 years old and she had zero complaints. In fact, she’s now old enough and wants one for her CCW. My best friend’s wife, all 5’2″ and 100 pounds soaking wet of her, will go through more .40 in her glock 23 on range days then most of the men. Sounds like we’re recruiting the wrong people to defend our country.

    • SportsDen July 19, 2019, 11:59 am

      The “fat” grip on the 320 is an easy fix — just order the X grip frame in either full or compact size. It makes a world of difference.

  • EJ February 8, 2017, 7:32 am

    The ballistics of the 9mm suck. Why did law enforcement across this country go to the 40? The 9mm won’t dependably shoot through a windshield, if it does who knows where it’s going. The 9mm won’t punch through a modern fender either. The 40 does. I think the only law enforcement I know of who still use the 9mm are some of those fools out in California. So why should our boys defending us have to use something less? I thought the whole idea was to get something better for them. Looks to me like it’s the same ole thing, cheap as hell. Save a buck, not a life. Just go back to the 1911, it was a real weapon. Just replace them when they get old not part them out like in the Vietnam era. These people in charge make me sick, these boys should have the BEST period, not the best cheap one.

    • BUURGA March 3, 2017, 2:59 am

      A 9 mm will punch through a fender, although why that should be an issue is puzzling. The Sig has been known for quality and reliability for years. The .45 was, and is, a fine round, but has trouble with modern body armor. The .40 just doesn’t do that much more to start new supply lines when 9mm ammo is available world wide. No sidearm is really designed to attack vehicles anyway. Law enforcement is widely using the 9mm or will be. The ballistics are fine, don’t know where you got that one from.

      • Clayton March 3, 2017, 8:13 am

        The ballistic for a 9mm are a long way from fine.
        Remember that our military are bound be rules of war to use FMJ ammo only. When you are engaged in a battle you don’t put your gun down and give up because your equipment can’t penetrate your adversaries armor . So you had better be carrying appointment that had a treat their armor whether it’s a fender or a windshield.

        • Oaf March 3, 2017, 7:12 pm

          Our military is NOT bound by any “rules of war” that prohibit hollow point bullets. The 1899 Hague Convention banned bullets that expand or flatten easily in the human body, but America has never been signatory to that agreement. In fact the US military is considering issuing hollow point handgun ammo now.

      • Frank Morehouse March 15, 2017, 7:13 am

        Not true-the .357 round was designed to punch through an engine block…common knowledge

  • Jesse January 31, 2017, 1:53 pm

    The military should never have dropped the 1911. Bit since they already did, I think the Sig is a great choice. So what they will have to train & learn a new weapon system! That’s what training is for. It’s not hard to train military personnel on how to use & handle a striker after carrying a Beretta w/ a hammer. I think once everyone is up to speed & units have a choice on carry or compact sizes, the Sig will liked by every soldier, even the anti-polymer ones. I love my 320, love it. Semper Fidelis

  • Gene Simmons January 30, 2017, 10:12 am

    I like the P320. I own two, a full size and compact. I’ve owned them for 6 months. During that 6 months, neither have been as reliable as any of the many Glocks I’ve owned and shot since 1992. In fact, I had more malfunctions (failures to extract) with my P320 Compact in one range session (17 in 75 rounds) than I’ve had in a quarter-century of shooting thousands of rounds through Glocks. Sig Sauer quickly replaced the extractor, which is known to be an issue in the Compact, and I’m grateful to their customer service.

    My main concern with the P320 is long-term durability. The Glock has been vetted by decades of field work and millions of rounds. The P320 has been around only for about 18 months and is basically a striker-fired reintroduction of the unsuccessful P250. I’m really interested in the results of the P320’s military durability tests. If it passed, hey, that’s wonderful and our troops deserve nothing but the best.

    One thing that I’ve considered is that some of Army brass wanted the P226 so badly in 1985 that it was almost a foregone conclusion that they were going to get their choice of Sig Sauer this time. Irrelevant, but interesting nonetheless. Congratulations to Sig Sauer and I hope the Army has the best of luck with the P320.

    • Aaron S. March 3, 2017, 9:09 am

      I don’t think we probably have a lot of The same army Brass as we had 32 years ago.

    • Kenny Carwile March 3, 2017, 12:50 pm

      I’ve owned a compact 320 for over a year now and in close to 2000 rounds I’ve had 0 issues. I shoot my own hand loads so I think I’ve only shot 1 box of factory. Love the gun!

  • Phred January 29, 2017, 9:45 am

    Thanks to all who clearly applied a lot of thought and expertise in writing about these firearms.

  • Foxtrap January 29, 2017, 9:01 am

    I think this pistol is a fine choice. The only problem that should be fixed, as the 9mm hangup. I get that it’s a NATO thing, but that doesn’t make it ok. It needs to be upgraded to at least .40 S&W, or maybe 10mm. 45 acp is probably asking too much in such a lightweight pistol, for the average Joe.

    • Aaron S. March 3, 2017, 9:20 am

      We have a lot of women in our military and the .40 is just too violent on recoil, With FMJ ammo it just does not perform significantly better. The .45 is slow and has issues with body armor and slightly more recoil than the 9 but not as violent as the .40. Price does play a big role, but the 9mm in today’s military makes sense. LE departments are going back to the 9mm and ditching the .40 for the same reasons (not all departments)). It has been around and used by military and LE for a lot longer than Glock, or the .40 has been around. .40 was developed due to the lack of punch the .38 special had, not really due to the 9mm. I heard also the military is considering going away from FMJ, we are not bound by it, we can choose.
      Also Sig has been making fine and dependable firearms for a lot longer than Glock, Glock needs to quit crying, they had the same chance as everyone else, they were not chosen. Sigs are made in the US mostly, Glock is not, the money stays here, not that that matters I guess.

      • Jim March 22, 2019, 5:13 pm

        Best review. We own several Sig P320 in 9 and 45. Thanks

  • Glenn61 January 29, 2017, 6:43 am

    I like it,….!. the guts can come out easily for quick cleaning, The Beretta 92FS is still a great gun, but this is more up to date.
    This will be a nice addition to the infantry while Trump builds up the military again.
    But,,,I’ll hang on to my Beretta , it’s a great pistol once you replace the ridiculous safety on the slide with a Wilson Combat after market one.
    I still have a love for the pistol with a hammer that can be cocked, Just like I still prefer a 5-speed stick in my car and my truck too.
    I guess I’m getting old.

    • Gomer Pyle March 12, 2017, 4:39 pm

      Yeah yer purty old, but I prefer a three speed on the column for my car and three on the floor for my truck.

  • Mikial January 27, 2017, 9:25 pm

    In truth, all the guns submitted in the RFP were great guns. The Sig had the features the Army wanted at the price they wanted to pay. I like Glocks, but after spending 2 1/2 years in Iraq as a DoD contractor working with the troops and indigenous forces I completely understand why the Army wanted an external safety. The 1911 was a great gun in its day, the M9 served our troops well in its day, and the Sig will be a reliable and solid handgun for our troops going forward. Period.

  • Shannon January 27, 2017, 6:50 pm

    “And maybe it could have been hammer-fired — and then it wouldn’t have qualified for the job.”

    And it would have been the equally remarkable Sig Sauer P250, which has been in production even longer. Sig learned from this gun’s rocky release and all its pains and tribulations, then designed a serialized inner mechanism and slide for the striker-firing requirements.

  • Colonel G January 27, 2017, 5:08 pm

    Most of us have their favorites, but chances of The U.S. Army adopting our personal favorite pistol are pretty remote. The old Colt 1911 was fine in its day, but that day has passed. The same can be said of my personal favorite, the superb Browning Hi Power. Most of us are familiar with Sig which has a reputation second to none. If I were issued a Sig 320, I might find a point or two where it doesn’t match my Browning, but having shot many Sigs before, I would have complete confidence that it is utterly reliable, exceptionally accurate and probably superior to any pistol the opposition might have. Sig’s reputation, fit and handling are exceptional, the testing seems to have been rigorous and thorough, and the 320 meets all the criteria for a modern combat sidearm . I’ll take it.

    • richard from willow springs January 27, 2017, 8:28 pm

      my ’73 Hi Power had horrible accuracy. another fellow who bought one mid 70’s said same thing. we both got rid of them.

      • Foxtrap January 29, 2017, 9:15 am

        I bought a High Power in the 70’s too, and had the same accuracy issues. Couldn’t hit a bull in the ass with an ironing board, so I sold it too.

  • Edward M Pate January 27, 2017, 4:18 pm

    I am just curious after all the years of the M9 with that long DA first pull if you might see more than a few accidental discharges with this new weapon. Let’s face it, military handgun training leaves much to be desired and could stand some improving and putting more rounds down range in training.

    • Rrudytoo January 28, 2017, 10:41 am

      Absolutely agree! I’m a Vietnam era former active duty Marine and my experience was fam fire, only, when it came to handguns which, in my case, meant the M1911.

  • Brian Moore January 27, 2017, 3:51 pm

    I am very happy about this choice and think they have chosen very well! I was active duty when they went from the 1911 to the M-9 and hated that move. They should have chosen the 226 then. Had they done that, this move would be unnecessary.

  • Missbaysdaddy January 27, 2017, 2:42 pm

    I think they should have gone with the CZ-75B. I own two of them and they are excellent pistols. The big draw back is that they would cost twice as much. Just would not be possible to make them for $207.00 each. I wish if they were going for that small amount I would own more than two.

    • SGT-N January 27, 2017, 4:15 pm

      I love pistols made by CZ as well, but the CZ-75 series is not modular.

  • Mike January 27, 2017, 2:08 pm

    I don’t know the Sig, but I shoot a 9mm S&W M&P frequently and like it very much – reliable & accurate. The updated M&P series just released looks like an awesome American-made alternative.

    • SGT-N January 27, 2017, 4:30 pm

      I have both a S&W M&P 9mm and a SIG Sauer P250 Compact, the hammer fired predecessor to the P320, in 380 ACP, which has a 13-round mag, and love both of them. The only difference is the fact that I can change the P250 to 9mm, 357 SIG, 40 S&W, or 45 ACP for around $300 to $350, which is less than a no name pistol, and still have the parts for the 380 ACP.

  • Ed Robinson January 27, 2017, 1:33 pm

    What’s the point? The GI pistol, not intended for SF use, is the least important piece of military armorment in the arsenal. Very few modern pistols wouldn’t work. So go for simple, functional and inexpensive and get on with it.

    • Kivaari January 27, 2017, 2:35 pm

      That’s what this pistol is. It is dirt simple (could have been a Glock) and doesn’t cost much money. A $207 each that’s pretty reasonable.

  • Ronald Brabbin January 27, 2017, 1:14 pm

    Why can’t a American company produce a superior side arm for our military, designed and produced by Americans.

    • Kivaari January 27, 2017, 2:38 pm

      This IS an American design and built in New Hampshire.

    • Bill Hughes January 27, 2017, 2:55 pm

      It IS being produced by an American company. It IS designed and produced by Americans. Do your research. SIG SAUER USA, NH.

      • FactChecker90803 January 27, 2017, 7:45 pm

        Most dont know that A separate company named SIG Sauer was founded in the USA in 1985 with the name Sigarms (until October 2007) to import and distribute SIG Sauer firearms into the United States.

        Since 2000 SIG Sauer USA Inc, has been organizationally separated from SIG Sauer GmbH. SIG Sauer USA, is a wholly separate company that has a slew of weapons that have been independently developed and co-developed with L&O Holding Gruppe that bought SIG, and renamed it Swissarms, the units that are held by this Holding Company consist of:

        J.P. Sauer & Sohn.
        Swissarms Inc.
        Mauser Jagdwaffen GMBH.
        The German manufacturer SIG Sauer GmbH.

  • sean January 27, 2017, 12:41 pm

    I have one and was amazed with the accuracy. Very much a close counter part to the M16. Very simple gun to learn. Parts are basic and easy. I think it was a logical choice. It appears the military version will have a manual safety. Having been in the Army I like it and it will be easy for new recruits to master. Is they’re more accurate, better triggers, more cosmetically appealing pistols? Of course! This is not about that. This is about teaching someone that has never used a pistol how to use it, master it, simplicity of parts, reliable, accurate, easily modified, light weight, and cost effective. It seems to fit the bill.

  • Noel P. January 27, 2017, 12:11 pm

    The cost factor ? 200,000 guns, 450,000,000+ million dollars. Even with spares and backup (which is seldom around when you need it) I don’t see these getting anywhere near $207.00. Maybe their math was wrong.
    Also on nonmetal frames there does exist a concern over extended use damaging the polomer frame. I have a Sig Striker framed pistol and others and I found that the Walters seem to point better but as pistols go the Sig is fine. I am now more concerned about the caliber.

    • Kivaari January 27, 2017, 12:38 pm

      The $207 is for the pistol, the balance of the money is for spare parts, magazines, holsters, training etc. The contract includes all those features. It will be 9mm.

  • MuddyEye January 27, 2017, 12:04 pm

    A long time ago when the decision was made to drop the .45ACP and go with a smaller faster bullet, a golden opportunity was missed. Years ago the .38 Super offered magnum firepower in a semi-automatic design weapon. In Iraq it was important to have more power at a longer distance, and still have a flat shooting trajectory, with a manageable recoil. Since the SIG-P320 is multi-caliber there is still hope for this option. The battlefield is not the place for a CCW as a primary fighting tool, it is an open carry, bigger more demanding environment. SIG has a reputation for being easy to shoot accurately with little practice. Accuracy instills confidence.

    • Kivaari January 27, 2017, 12:41 pm

      Why worry about “long range” with a pistol. A 38 Super isn’t that much flatter and long distances are est served with an M4 carbine. The average military pitol user will do well to hit at 25m.

      • SGT-N January 27, 2017, 6:29 pm

        A pistol caliber that is accurate and powerful at more than 25 meters is important when your M4 goes tits up in the middle of a firefight.

  • Radesh Singh January 27, 2017, 12:00 pm

    Haven’t held or fired one of these. I had a p250, and a 2022. Didn’t like the feel of either. Hence the word ‘had’. I have a p220 and p229, so certainly nothing against SIGs, but I really like the XD(m), and Glock 19. That said, I would be great to hear from the people who put the gun through its paces.

    • sean January 27, 2017, 12:45 pm

      Had a p229 too. Hated it, love the p320 though. Straight shooter.

    • Shannon January 27, 2017, 6:54 pm

      Uses the same grip modules as the P250, so all in all, it would feel the same in that regards.

  • William liddell January 27, 2017, 11:31 am

    You got the Berretta purchase reasons wrong. We bought the M9 because the Italians bought our M60 tank. It was more about politics than either quality , reliability or price. You will find the same situation for our buying Belgian FN machineguns in exchange they bought our F16’s. There were/are better pistols and machineguns but that seems to be secondary to our politics.

    • John S. January 27, 2017, 6:50 pm

      Curious as to which machine guns are superior to the 249 and especially the M240?
      The FN Mag/240 is probably the most widely issued 7.62 NATO GPMG in the world.
      The new and improved M60 variants are interesting, but not widely issued in the US military.

    • Jake January 27, 2017, 9:05 pm

      What machine-gun is better than the FN MAG? As for best pistol, who the heck knows? Everybody has an opinion and the government, even though they always say this newest one will replace all others still winds up with ten different guns in circulation all the time. What do the SEALS really use? 1911’s? Glocks? HK mk23? SIG Mk25? Depending who you talk to you get four or five answers.

    • Max Slowik January 30, 2017, 2:50 pm

      I agree, the small module is more medium and the medium module is pretty large.

    • John R April 19, 2018, 7:14 pm

      Long time ago but wasn’t there a hint about Italian ports being more receptive to US Navy ships if we brought the M9?

  • Robert Smith January 27, 2017, 10:56 am

    A bit off-topic, but what’s now going to happen to all those M9s? I hope some anti-gun bureaucrat in the Pentagon doesn’t order them destroyed. Congress should require them to be turned over to the Director of Civilian Marksmanship for sale to the American public. They are our guns.

    • Kivaari January 27, 2017, 12:46 pm

      The M9 remains ins service over the 10 years of this contract. Then they go to reserve/guard units for 30 years of service. Just like the M1911 went into reserve units after the M9 came on line. It took years to switch out.

      • DM3404 January 27, 2017, 3:11 pm

        Guard and reserve have the M9s now. The old ones will probably go the route of the old 1911s, sold to other countries and stockpiled by the CMP , then all the rumors about sale to the public will begin.

  • Michael Monahan January 27, 2017, 10:56 am

    I heartily disagree with the statement “…everyone in the military is not expected to be a warfighter…” Every member of every branch of the military is always expected to be a warfighter. When the chips are down, the cook drops his or her ladle and picks up a weapon. That is taught for day 1 of basic training.

    • DRAINO January 27, 2017, 1:53 pm

      Not sure what branch you are talking about but during my 20 in the AF….that WAS NOT the culture. They are slowly trying to change that culture, but until the AF has bled like the other corps….it’s always going to be behind the times…or lines, should I say. Not saying the AF hasn’t bled. Many great Airmen have given their lives on duty. But as a whole, losses have been much greater in the other branches. But back to the point, Ideally that may be how things work in a perfect military. But that war fighter culture has not been and probably still isn’t shared by all branches. A painful truth to be sure.

  • Gamebred January 27, 2017, 10:39 am

    The number one thing to remember about this choice is . . . it met all the contractual requirements of the DoD’s specifications. Above and beyond all, that’s why it got picked.

    Do all the requirements really matter in “the real world”? Simply put, it doesn’t matter. Those were the requirements, and the Sig 320 did the best job meeting them. Really, that’s all there is to it.

    We can argue all the usual arguments, but at the end of the day this is a service handgun that will basically be a backup, concealment, or “he just needs to be armed” gun for our military. It has to serve people that go from expert level to “oh, is that a gun?” level, and there are far more of the latter.

    It appears to be a decent “serves most purposes” handgun, and that’s probably what our military needs. Our special forces have access to better or at least more specialized weaponry, and that’s smart. We don’t need super custom pieces to serve as qualification arms for our stateside officers and staff.

    And maybe that’s what this modular system can do. Maybe there’s a “standard” package for general duty and a “*insert your favorite black ops term here*” version for the guys we read about in Soldier of Fortune?

  • Jonathan D Olenick January 27, 2017, 10:26 am

    NOTHING stops like a .45acp, but more recoil and fewer rounds and heavier ammo. Jon

    • paul paradis January 27, 2017, 10:57 am

      SW M&P keep the money in the US with US made and owned

      • Richard January 27, 2017, 12:46 pm

        SigSauer is now actually a American company and separate form Sig in Germany. It also no longer has ties to its original Swiss manufacturers( which is now named SAN Swiss). Most of the newer guns are designed and made here in the US. The 320 is entirely a US designed gun. Sig Sauer also doesn’t pay any licensing to Sig in Germany for any guns manufactured today. Its essenually three separate companies, SigArms in Germany, SAN Swiss in Switzerland, and Sig Sauer in the US.

      • Kivaari January 27, 2017, 12:49 pm

        SIGs are made in New Hampshire. Wages stay here. Holsters, parts, magazines, training all stays here.

        • DRAINO January 27, 2017, 1:59 pm

          Yeah, but why the anti-gun peoples republic of NH….??????!!!! Go to a more pro gun state!! At least a state where people can legally own what you make. How contradictory is that?? Should be another requirement…….made in a US state that is not considered anti-gun.

          • Dan January 28, 2017, 2:54 am


            Your comment couldn’t be more wrong. NH is pro gun. NH is also in the process of passing constitutional carry legislation. In NH open carry is legal, concealed carry is legal, private sale is legal. Check your facts

    • James Drouin January 27, 2017, 1:04 pm

      Old adage … while a 9mm may expand, a .45 will never shrink.

      • Radesh Singh January 28, 2017, 6:25 pm

        Excellent, comment. Going to borrow that one!

    • Edward M Pate January 27, 2017, 4:08 pm

      Like 45 ACP but 10mm stops a LOT harder!

  • Catfish86 January 27, 2017, 10:15 am

    OK, I see the word “iconic” coupled with the Beretta M9 and they act like it is proven. It was a dud when it was adopted and never improved. Please stop using that word with that piece of crap.

    • James Drouin January 27, 2017, 1:06 pm

      Well, there ARE “iconic failures” … it just seems like the military specializes in collecting them.

    • Edward M Pate January 27, 2017, 4:10 pm

      There is NOTHING wrong with that weapon other than the fact so many were allowed to get so worn out. They went through the toughest testing any military handgun ever did prior to being adopted. I’ve got probably 5000+ rounds through my 92FS and the only issues I’ve ever had were a couple of FTF using cheap reloads. Also one of the most accurate handguns out there too, and a hammer to allow for a double strike if needed.

  • Bryan January 27, 2017, 9:56 am

    When this thing went into service with LE there was a mandatory recall on the total slaide assembly… happened in my county. They were given a deal by sig to trade in the amazing P229 for this POS. I am a huge fan os SIG, just not this one. Good thing they are cheap……they will need to replace a lot of them.

  • Alan January 27, 2017, 9:34 am

    For all the naysayers, It’s STILL a damn site better than that committee built “never seen combat” POS of a Berretta.
    Hell, the ORIGINAL Berretta with the frame mounted safety was better than what they came up with.
    I have never understood that stupid slide mounted safety alteration. Smaller handed people couldn’t use it without shifting grip.
    I don’t care for Sigs mostly, they don’t ‘feel’ right to me.
    But they do have the reputation

    • Kivaari January 27, 2017, 12:53 pm

      In the last 15 years of war, I suspect a few M9 pistols have seen combat. Dakota Myers used one while earning his MOH. He didn’t like it, but he used it.

  • JLA January 27, 2017, 9:14 am

    I’d have gone with the Smith & Wesson M&P .45 myself, but the 320 should get the job done. It’s interesting that it has a manual thumb safety, or at least it looks like it does. I wasn’t aware that was even on option on the P320. I guess when you’re buying hundreds of thousands of them you can get them anyway you want.

    • Mike Loveall January 27, 2017, 10:40 am

      I have the predecessor the Sig P-250 sub-compact

  • JLA January 27, 2017, 9:12 am

    I’d have gone with the Smith & Wesson M&P .45 myself, but the 320 should get the job done.

  • WS January 27, 2017, 8:57 am

    I don’t think they could’ve gone wrong with an FNX-45 Tactical. The only problem? The price tag.

    • Mark Are January 27, 2017, 11:29 am

      Price tag? When has the government ever really cared about the price tag of anything? At least these weren’t as expensive as some of the toilet seats they bought. BTW…they have a printing press and really don’t worry about the cost of much of anything anymore.

    • Kivaari January 27, 2017, 2:48 pm

      The FN Tactical is too large for everyone except a couple genetic misfits.

  • ROSCOE January 27, 2017, 8:34 am

    I carried the M1911A in a few wars and own both a retired military one and a new Springfield Armory version. I checked the serial numbers of the ones I carried for duty, and they were manufactured in the 1940s. And thank you, John Browning for a fantastic life preserver. I’ve never shot the Beretta, but the ones I’ve seen in ground pounders’ holsters look like they wore out a lot faster than the M1911A1s did. On the other hand, I like a “large capacity” fist full of quick, accurate, sustained violence. So I like Sigs. Apparently the Infantry Board and I are in agreement, and the Army made a great decision.

  • Tom King January 27, 2017, 8:08 am

    A little off subject. In the picture of the soldier shooting the pistol. How is he holding it? It almost seems if it has a forward grip.

    • Dave January 27, 2017, 9:17 am

      If you google Dave Sevigny (I think I spelled that correctly), you will see that his grip technique when shooting Glocks is very much like the gentleman in the picture above.

  • Joseph January 27, 2017, 8:05 am

    Hmm, but the least expensive P320 I can find for sale to the public is about $600.00. Yeah, I know – you buy $5M worth and you’ll get them for about $200.00 too. It does seem though, that double the government rate would be a legitimate retail price. I expect you can get an M9 pretty cheap in the near future if you know what to look for. Anyone have tips on how to acquire one that isn’t shot out?

    • Elnonio January 27, 2017, 9:42 am

      I bought my M92FS years ago for the simple reason that it’s what we carry and so I wanted to have on to be able to shoot it occasionally through the year with it and not just once a year.
      Assuming that the Marine Corps goes the 320 way, my M9 will go on sale.
      The M9 is a good enough firearm, but I won’t need it then and it’s not one that I feel particularly attached to. I suspect mine won’t be the only one!

  • Warner Anderson January 27, 2017, 7:58 am

    The pistol was issued to a combat arms unit that served as a real-world test bed, right? Why not interview some of those troops, and look at their official feedback as well? More meaningful and insightful than opinions from all us “Former Action Guys” and armchair opinionators.

  • Infidel7.62 January 27, 2017, 7:44 am

    The SIG is fine but it should have been the 229 or 226 striker fired is a reason not to buy it.

    • Jim J January 27, 2017, 10:01 am

      I completely agree, I am no fan of striker fired. I actually just bought the Beretta storm full-size 45 caliber. And I have to say I absolutely love it! I have owned six, other Burress, Smith and Wesson, cold and I have to say the new storm with the barrel design is a pleasure to shoot, is extremely accurate stays on target much better than a standard blowback design and is very rugged. Plus you have the option of single/double action etc. it also comes with a host of options.

  • Anthony Romano January 27, 2017, 7:29 am

    I think the M&P should have been the choice, it’s an American company and it does virtually everything the Sig does.

    • Kivaari January 27, 2017, 1:02 pm

      SIG is located in New Hampshire. Beretta is a USA company, just like SIG. We made M9s here for 30 years. We’ll make the SIG here for the 10 years of the contract.

  • Lon January 27, 2017, 7:18 am

    Akshilly, the grip is easier to replace than an AR…. you don’t need tools. 😉

  • Ed January 27, 2017, 6:40 am


    • Theron Patrick January 27, 2017, 8:11 am

      The Sig is Meade in the USA.

      • Ed February 1, 2017, 6:31 am

        BUY AMERICAN !!!
        Foreign products made or assembled here are still not American. I say stick to American companies like most other nations support their own. This comment is not a knock on foreign products, but meant to support homemade industries first.

  • Pops45 January 27, 2017, 6:05 am

    Does this mean I won’t have to listen or read about the 1911 vs Beretta debate anymore?

  • Stephen Burchett January 27, 2017, 5:43 am

    This is a dollars and cents choice, however , I think special ops. will still have the 1911 type available, where as the P320 may be better for the rest.

    • Kivaari January 27, 2017, 1:03 pm

      The Marines dropped the M45 after just a couple of years.

  • REM1875 January 27, 2017, 5:39 am

    Well here’s hoping the slide doesn’t crack at around 3000 rd like the first “iconic” M-9s did.

    • Kivaari January 27, 2017, 3:10 pm

      Remember that was using +P+ ammo. That was also 30 years ago and the issue was solved. Just like the M16 issues were 50 years ago, and they were solved.

    • cisco kid January 27, 2017, 8:40 pm

      most likely the frame will split.

  • Will Drider January 27, 2017, 12:44 am

    I don’t have a dog in this fight. Having retired from the Mil and then from LE, Nobody dictates the firearms I will carry. I will say that the “modular requirement” is over blown. The “pistol” is actually nothing more then a drop in trigger group. I find it a real stretch to call it a receiver but that is the trend of erector set pistols. If we really look at the numbers most of the pistols will never have their modular parts changed. How many undercover cover and covert operators need CC size? So that leaves grip size: say 60% fit the standard and split the other 40% among inserts. I’ll say there is some benefit there. But the bottom line is the Army is going to buy a shit load of extra parts that are going to sit in boxes and add to the logistics tail and being dragged around everywhere the Units go. That takes money, fuel and cargo space that often times is scarce.
    One size fits all. Maybe a non-modular pistol isn’t too big but the soldiers are too small or not trained enough to be proficient in a make do with what you have Military? Smaller folks used the Garand, BAR, M14, M60 and 1911.

    • joeseph momma January 27, 2017, 9:12 am

      I agree with you…

    • Pseudo January 27, 2017, 10:04 am

      I agree with you as well. Why is it that for years there have been so many smaller size folks and women who have had no issues shooting the .45 without complaints about recoil, as there are the same size folks still shooting the .45, yet the trend I keep hearing any more is about “recoil?”

  • Al January 26, 2017, 3:59 pm

    +1 for the P320 full size. I owned one and only traded to fund another purchase. The trigger was a tad heavier than I prefer, but so smooth I barely noticed. It’s perfect for stress situations.

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